AAPI Heritage Month: Vino Wong

lauravino.0610Vino Wong is a veteran award-winning photojournalist. He moved to Malaysia in November 2012, where he works as a corporate communications manager at Majupadu Development, a commercial and real estate development company. He is also a stringer for CNN covering global travel stories. Prior to his move, he was with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution since October of 2005, and in June of 2011, he joined the WSBTV and WSB Radio as a multi-media journalist to provide breaking news coverage as part of the Cox Media Group. Before joining AJC, he worked for various publications, including: The Insider Magazine, Democrat & Chronicle, Greater Niagara Newspapers, Emporia Gazette, and The Salina Journal. For his pursuit of photojournalism, he has received awards and honors from the Associated Press, Kansas Press Association, Georgia Press Association, New York State Associated Press, National Press Photographers Association and the Asian American Journalists Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business communications from Kansas Wesleyan University and a proud 2009 Asian American Journalists Association (ELP) Executive Leadership Program alumnus.   

Vino Wong

How long have you been in photojournalism?

My career has spanned over 18 years and my chosen path has driven me from the Midwest to Western New York and to the South East and now Malaysia. I’m currently in Corporate Communications and a stringer for CNN covering travel visual stories.

How and why did you decide to become a photojournalist?

At heart, I am a storyteller who sees and appreciates life from behind and in front of the lens. My calling started in 1994 while in college using my first camera, Pentax K1000. There is a powerful, emotional response to photographs, which is what fuels my love of this art.

What do you love most about photography?

My love of people translates to photography. Each of us has a fire in our hearts burning for something. It’s our responsibility in life to find it and keep it lit. Photography gives me a wondrous adventure that excites the very core of my being allowing me to live the story that no one else can live – the story of my own unique life.

How has being an AAPI helped/hurt your photojournalism career?

It gave me an opportunity to advocate and share our culture, just like some through food by inviting them to talk about or share dishes and I, creatively through the viewfinder with our audiences.

What advice did you wish someone gave you when you were starting out?

Photograph what you love. Never feel embarrassed to share your images with others because you don’t think they are “good enough.” Let’s get real, not every frame is destined for the front page, so cut yourself some slack and don’t get caught up in pessimistic self-judgement. Do what moves you. Be who you are. Explore life’s mysteries until you figure out what matters most to you. The world is your newsroom.

Wat Phan Tao Buddhist temple in the Old City, Chiang Mai.Wat Phan Tao Buddhist temple in the Old City, Chiang Mai Jan. 24-28, 2013

vwong02Hmong Village of Doi Pui, located near the top of the mountain, high above Chiang Mai. (Vino Wong)

vwong03One of the most beautiful areas in Roswell is the City’s Old Mill Park. A 30-foot dam and millrace were constructed on Vickery Creek in the mid-to-late 1830s to supply power for the mills. (Vino Wong)


Fall scene at one of the most beautiful areas in Roswell is the City’s Old Mill Park. (North of Atlanta) (Vino Wong)

vwong05Snorkeling in the aquatic freedom of beautiful Ko Samui, Thailand. Shot with the Canon S100 in the WP-DC43 underwater housing. (Vino Wong)


Over 100 Atlanta-area ballerinas glide, leap, pirouette with the hopes of becoming the next rising star during the School of American Ballet’s 2012 Summer Courses at Atlanta Ballet. (Vino Wong)


A temple in Siem Reap… Cambodia’s genocide of 1975-1979 resulting in two-million deaths. (Vino Wong)


The owner of this car, Ira Young, was consumed by the sinkhole early Saturday and told a reporter vandals cut the seats and stole his radio, causing more damage to the vehicle near the corner of West Liddell Road and Club Place in Duluth. The driver of the was uninjured according to Brian Kelly, spokesman for Gwinnett County Police. (Vino Wong)